With the weather starting to show small signs of Spring, I got one last opportunity to get out and catch some smallies! Today is the last day of the fishing season here in Minnesota. Since bass season won’t be reopening until May 24th, there will be a lot of time to practice in other areas. Coming up in the early part of April I have planned on spending some time on Grand Lake, in Northeastern Oklahoma. From there I will spend a lot of my time fishing the Mississippi River between Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Iowa, but mainly concentrating on pools 4 thru 7. I will also spend some time preparing for early season tournaments on a few lakes in Wisconsin.
So needless to say I was ecstatic to be able to get one last time before the serious work begins! Both Pops and Matt accompanied me on this trip and after a quick trip to Cabela’s, we arrived at our fishing destination to find that everyone else including their mothers decided to take the same opportunity as we did. IT WAS PACKED!! There were fisherman every where! Most were live bait fishing for walleye and catfish, but that really didn’t matter. This area is extremely small and I had never seen it so busy. I guess with being the last day of the season and almost 40 degree’s everyone was thinking fishing.
We must have fished for around two or three hours and had very limited success. I caught 4, Matt caught 4, and Pops 2. I would have been pretty disappointed with my limited success except for two reasons. One, all four of my fish were nice ones all being two pounds or better and I caught my personal best walleye ever. The brute weighed in at 7 pounds! I know that there are people out there who have caught better, but I spend literally every available second fishing for bass, so to catch one of that size was pretty cool! I have to admit though, down deep a good portion of me wished it had been a 7 pound smallmouth! I was able to get a couple quick pictures and released her unharmed back to the waters for another angler to appreciate.
After fishing I was eager to get home and watch the final weigh in of the 2008 BASSMASTER Classic, at Lake Hartwell, SC. This Classic was holding up to all its hype! The weather was nasty and some of the top names made the top 25 cut. Most notable were Kevin VanDam, Aaron Martens, and Mike Iaconelli, although in the end Alton Jones, from Waco, TX, took home the most coveted trophy in our sport, with a nice 3 day total weight of 49-7 lbs. and claimed the winning check of $500,000.00 dollars!! Jones targeted bass in 25 to 30 feet, on the inside edge of the standing timber submerged in Lake Hartwell. Alton used three lures to catch his bass: a Booyah Pigskin jig and a Booyah AJ’s Go-To jig, both rigged with a Yum trailer, and a Cotton Cordell CC Spoon.
As much as I look forward to watching the Classic every year, I can’t help but dream of one day being there competing. Or better yet of being lucky enough to hold that trophy up in the air! God willing with endless days of hard work and practice, I’ll be able to one day live up to my childhood dream…….Winning the Bassmaster Classic!